Working remotely has risen in popularity over the last few years.
As great as many people think work from home is, it is not perfect.
There are some downsides.
Because of this, I created this post, 10 important pros and cons of working from home.
It details not only the positive things you can expect to experience as a result of working remotely, but also the negatives too.
In the end, you will have a better idea of this type of work environment is one you can thrive in.
10 Critical Pros and Cons Of Working From Home
5 Pros Of Working From Home
There are many benefits to working from home.
Here are the biggest ones you need to consider.
#1. Flexible Work Schedule
One of the best work from home advantages is having flexible schedules.
In many cases, you have greater flexibility for when you start and end your day, within reason.
For example, you might decide that you are more productive when you start working at 9am versus 8am.
You might also find that you get your second wind later at night, so you can take a longer lunch break during the day and then make up the missed time later that day.
The important thing to remember is to make sure your manager or boss is OK with your idea of normal business hours.
If you aren’t straying too far from your company’s typical work day, then you don’t need approval.
But you plan to work odd hours, you should get permission first.
#2. Location Freedom
When you have to go into an office, you need to live near the office.
It just isn’t practical to drive 4 hours each way to get to and from work.
While in some cases you can do this, like in the event of a relocation, long term it doesn’t make sense.
When you work from home however, you can live almost anywhere you like.
As long as you have a stable internet connection, you don’t need to be close to an office.
In the event you do have to go into the office, you can make the trip in.
#3. No Commute Time Or Expenses
Another huge advantage of working from home is the reduced commuting expenses and time saved.
By not going into the office, you drive much less, increasing the life of your car and the wear and tear parts of your car like tires and oil.
This is a valuable benefit.
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Another benefit of working from home is the time you save by no longer having a daily commute.
If you have a long commute, like one hour, you saved yourself 2 hours a day.
And in reality, you save even more time because you don’t have to shower each day and put on business casual clothes, etc.
This time savings could be used to improve your home life, working on relationships with your loved ones, exercising more, or getting more household chores done.
#4. Better Work Life Balance
Many people experience a better work-life balance when they have the option for remote work.
This is because they can start their day at a time that benefits them the most.
Additionally, they can take longer breaks during the day to run personal errands.
Of course, you need to make up for the missed work time, but not leaving everything until the weekend is a benefit most people enjoy.
#5. Tax Savings And Other Savings
When you work from home, you can save on taxes by taking some home office deductions to help you save money.
For example, you can write off some of your monthly internet bill or cell phone bill as you are now using them for business purposes.
If your employer doesn’t reimburse expenses, you can write off those that are related to your job.
This could include your computer or laptop, a printer, printer ink, paper, etc.
And there are more savings when you don’t have to go into the office.
You don’t have to buy new work clothes or makeup are just two examples.
5 Cons Of Working From Home
As awesome as it sounds to work from home, there are some big drawbacks you need to be aware of.
In some cases, it can lead to mental health issues.
Here are the 5 biggest negative aspects to working from home.
#1. No Work Life Private Life Separation
One of the biggest complaints starting to arise from working from home is the lack of work and private life separation.
When working in an office space, it is easier to leave your work at the office.
Sure there are times you have to check and respond to emails or phone calls, but for the most part, you are off the clock.
When you work from home, this isn’t always the case.
Co-workers might be working different hours than you and as a result, are sending you work you need to take care of during off hours, interfering with your personal life.
Additionally, your boss can blur the lines as well, thinking you are available all the time instead of just during normal working hours.
Finally, when you are in an office environment, you have a set time to the end of the day.
When you work remotely, it is easy to put in long days because you don’t have specific times to start and end your day.
As a result, many people are starting to feel burnt out.
The key is to try to set up a normal working time for you as best you can and stick with it.
#2. Might Get Passed Over For Promotions
A sad reality is that people that work from home tend to get passed over for promotion versus their peers that work in the office.
The belief is the lack of getting to people not in the office is hurting them.
For example, when you are in the office, you naturally run into co-workers at the water fountain, bathroom, or getting coffee.
These are opportunities where you can get to know each other on a more personal level and connect.
This is much harder to do with someone not in the office.
When you have a call together, most times you are just taking care of business and not small talking, which can hurt your chances of a promotion.
#3. Risk Of Isolation And Loneliness
One of the biggest challenges of working from home is dealing with the lack of social interaction and the effect it has on employee’s mental health.
When you work from home, you are typically alone and don’t get the human interaction you do at the office.
As a result of these feelings of isolation, some people can develop depression, anxiety, higher stress levels, and other health issues.
In fact, over 50% of workers recently polled cited they needed to take a mental health day in the past year.
If you feel yourself unhappy, lacking sleep, or are having a hard time with the adjustment of remote working, it is better to start talking to someone sooner rather than later so you can address the issue before it turns into a problem.
Of course, there are other people who are introverts and their work style and personal preferences have them thrive with remote jobs.
#4. Increase Risk Of Job Loss
Some people will lose their job as a result of working from home.
This is for the same reasons as pointed out above about not getting promoted.
When you don’t have a close relationship to co-workers or management, it is a lot easier for them to let you go and a lot harder for them to find a reason to keep you.
While this isn’t the only factor that comes into play when laying off staff, it is a factor at the end of the day.
Also, when a company is full of remote employees, it is much more difficult to develop a company culture.
This can lead to a business not growing as it should and may even lead to its failure.
#5. More Difficult To Work
A not much talked about issue with remote work is that it is more difficult in some cases.
You have kids running around the house or a dog barking, so you need to try to find a quiet place to work.
If you have a smaller house, you might not have home options to find a quiet place, so working at the kitchen table is your only choice.
Other people pick the bedroom, but lying in bed and working isn’t good for your posture and could lead to physical issues as well.
Finally, there is the issue of non-verbal communication.
Most remote workers communicate with co-workers using electronic communications like email, text message, and instant messages.
It is easy to misinterpret tone when reading one of these messages.
As a result, it can lead to issues in the workplace.
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People might not like you because of the way your respond to or write messages, or they simply have a negative opinion of your work ethic.
Because of this, it is important that you take the time to craft effective communication that leaves little confusion to the person the receiving end.
At the end of the day, there are plenty of advantages of working from home.
But as I showed you, there are both pros and cons to working from home.
Be certain you take everything into account before deciding that this work option is best for you.
While it may sound great in theory, in reality it might not be the best or even work for your situation.